By Marlee Ginter

ORANGEVALE (CBS13) – A community is leaning more than ever on local food banks, so when thieves took off with a generator at the Orangevale Fair Oaks Food Bank, they felt the hit.

Keith Wright, executive director of the food bank, said a security camera caught a clear shot of the two men stealing the generator while workers were inside grabbing more food to load up the truck.

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“Walked around the food bank, looked inside the trailer, saw that there was a generator, moved their car around, grabbed it and they were gone in 5 minutes,” Wright said, describing what happened.

That generator allows the food bank to distribute cold and fresh food, running the refrigerator and freezer when they’re delivering food to people offsite who can’t come to the food bank.

“My heart sank. That’s an important part of our distribution,” Wright said. “So, when I realized it had been stolen, I didn’t know exactly what to do.”

But the community knew what to do. They stepped up, donating enough money in just two days to replace the generator.

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“We could not do the work that we’re doing without the support of the community,” Wright said. “So to see the community support this mission is absolutely wonderful. I’m so proud of the community that we’re in.”

They couldn’t be more grateful. After all, they’re seeing double the people they usually see at the food bank on a regular basis.

“I cannot believe that someone would do what they did knowing that they would be taking directly out of the mouths of the people with such great need,” Wright said. “It’s my hope that they just didn’t understand what they were doing at the time that they did it.”

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They believe they already know who the suspects are and they filed a report with the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, but they’re hoping the thieves will just bring the generator back and they’ll leave it at that – no questions asked.